Fortune Minerals Announces Preliminary Economic Assessment Report for the Revenue Silver Mine in Colorado

Issued Capital: 190,244,847

First concentrate delivered to Teck's Trail Smelter in British Columbia for processing while mine & mill commissioning progress toward 400 ton per day ramp up

As a result of a review by staff of the Ontario Securities Commission, we are issuing the following news release regarding our disclosure on the Revenue Silver Mine property.

LONDON, ON, July 24, 2014 /CNW/ - Fortune Minerals Limited (TSX: FT) (OTCQX: FTMDF) ("Fortune" or the "Company") (www.fortuneminerals.com) announces the results of a Preliminary Economic Assessment ("PEA") report for the Revenue Silver Mine in southwest Colorado, U.S.A. The PEA prepared by SRK Consulting ("SRK") demonstrates an attractive 73.2% After Tax Internal Rate of Return ("IRR") and US$ 58.8 million 6% discounted After Tax Net Present Value ("NPV") for the project. A Technical Report with respect to the PEA ('the SRK Technical Report") will be filed on the SEDAR website (www.sedar.com) and the Company's website today. Fortune can acquire a 100% interest in the Revenue Silver Mine pursuant to an agreement with staged acquisition terms. The Company has already completed the purchase of a minimum 12% interest and is Operator of the mine. The purchase of the Revenue Silver Mine accomplishes Fortune's goal to become a producer, while also positioning the Company for further growth in the prolific Sneffels Silver Mining District of Colorado.

Highlights of the PEA:

  • Fully permitted and constructed mine, mill and surface facilities in the commissioning for a ramp up to 400 tons per day
  • Pre Tax IRR of 76.4% and After Tax IRR of 73.2%
  • Pre Tax 6% discounted NPV of US$ 69.6 million and After Tax NPV of US$ 58.8 million
  • Resources of 215,300 tons classified as Measured, 586,300 tons as Indicated and 684,200 tons as Inferred, containing 16.3 million ounces of silver in the Measured and Indicated Resources and 10.1 million ounces of silver in the Inferred Resources
  • Mine Plan Resource of 888,283 tons (diluted) with an average grade of 14.6 ounces of silver per ton, 0.02 ounces of gold per ton, 2.26 percent lead, and 0.90 percent zinc used as a basis for the economic analysis
  • Life of mine ("LOM") average annual mined production of 1.86 million ounces of silver
  • Cash cost of US$ 6.62 per ounce of silver net of by-product credits, excluding freight, treatment and refining charges ("TC/RC"), and US$ 10.28 per ounce C1 cash cost including TC/RC charges
  • 8-year mine life based only on the Mine Plan Resource including ramp up and ramp down
  • Upside from potential expansion of the Mine Plan Resource where widespread drilling indicates continuity of the mineralization, extension of the 2 main veins systems beyond the current Mineral Resource Estimate, identification of resources in the 6 other mineralized veins intersected by the main access tunnel, and expansion of production to other mines in an historic silver mining district

Introduction:

The Revenue Silver Mine is a fully constructed and permitted, high-grade, underground silver mine that is in commissioning. The mine is situated on 147 patented and unpatented mining claims, totaling approximately 1,079.9 acres in southwest Colorado, 11 km southwest of the town of Ouray and 490 km southwest of Denver. The Revenue Silver Mine is an historic producer in the late 1800's and early 1900's operated by Caroline Mining Co. and had production estimated at up to 15 million ounces of silver before the mill burned in 1912 and the mine closed. The underground workings have been rehabilitated and new surface facilities and an underground mill have been constructed. The mine is ramping up to a 400 ton per day production rate, and delivered its first shipment of concentrate to Teck Resources' Trail Smelter in British Columbia last week for treatment further to an off-take agreement to generate the mine's first revenues.

The Revenue Silver Mine is currently in commissioning. The Company advises that when the mine enters commercial production, that decision will not be based on a feasibility study of Mineral Reserves demonstrating economic and technical viability. As a result, there may be increased uncertainty of achieving any particular level of production or the cost of such production. Historically, such projects have a much higher risk of economic and technical failure.

Fortune, through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Fortune Revenue Silver Mines Inc. ("Fortune Revenue") entered into an agreement to acquire the Revenue Silver Mine and related assets from Silver Star Resources LLC, Star Mine Operations LLC and Revenue-Virginius Mines Corporation (collectively, "the Vendors"). Fortune Revenue has purchased a 12% participating interest in the mine and can purchase a 100% interest by paying the Vendors an additional US$ 14 million and by issuing a promissory note to pay US$ 34.5 to US$ 36.8 million in deferred quarterly installments over 3.5 to 5.75 years commencing in August, 2015. The amount of the quarterly payments and rate under which the promissory note is paid are determined by revenue targets for each respective quarter. Two deferred payments totaling US$ 4.5 million and a 2% net smelter return royalty - capped at US$ 9 million, are also payable to former owners of the mine. The acquisition of the remaining interest in the mine is subject to Fortune arranging financing.

Preliminary Economic Assessment:

Fortune and the Vendors contracted SRK to update the resources for the Revenue Silver Mine, which was completed in April, 2014, and disclosed in a news release, dated May 9, 2014. This release also announced the agreement under which Fortune Revenue can purchase the mine. Following the release, the mandate for the SRK Technical Report was changed to include a PEA so that Fortune could publicly disclose economic information for the mine. The SRK Technical Report will be filed on the SEDAR website (www.sedar.com) today and was authored by Dorinda Bair, BSc Geology, CPG, Principal Consultant (Geology), James M. Beck, Bsc Mining Engineering, PE, SRK Associate Consultant (Environmental), Mark K Jorgensen, BSc Chemical Engineering, SRK Associate Consultant (Metallurgy), and Joanna Poeck, BEng Mining, Senior Consultant (Mining Engineer) who are Qualified Persons for the purposes of National Instrument 43-101. The report was also subject to peer review as part of SRK's own internal process by Bret Swanson, BEng Mining, Principal Consultant (Mining Engineer).

The PEA is preliminary in nature and includes inferred mineral resources that are considered too speculative geologically to have the economic considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as mineral reserves. There is no certainty that the preliminary economic assessment will be realized.

Economic Results:

The economics for the Revenue Silver Mine were determined on a "Project Basis" using a 6% discounted cash flow model that was considered appropriate for a precious metal mine in commissioning. The financial model does not include financing costs or the capital that was previously spent on mine development. Ongoing capital improvements and sustaining capital totaling US$ 26.144 million LOM are included in the financial model and are summarized in the table below:

Capital Cost Summary

Area

LOM Capital (US$000s)

Mine Development

20,656

Mine Equipment

1,679

Plant Expansion

912

Environmental

2,897

Total

$26,144

 

The project economics are based on Mine Plan Resources that are a smaller subset of the larger Mineral Resource Estimate prepared by SRK. The Mine Plan Resources are the resources that fall within the current Mine Plan developed collectively by Fortune, SRK and the Revenue Silver Mine operations team. The Company expects to mine additional resources that are outside the current Mine Plan and are captured in the larger SRK Mineral Resource Estimate, but are in areas with insufficient drill hole density to define continuous Mine Plan resource blocks even though wide spaced drilling indicates there is continuity of the mineralization. The Mine Plan Resources were determined using a US$ 130 per ton net smelter return ("NSR") cut-off grade and the mining criteria required for the 400 tons per day mill rate that the project is ramping up to. The US$ 130 NSR per ton cut off for the project was estimated from operating costs that were previously estimated from the mine, metal recoveries from metallurgical test work, and the contracts that are in place with Teck Resources for purchase of the concentrates. A summary of the subsequently calculated LOM Operating Costs for the mine that are used in the economic analysis are presented in the table below:

Operating Cost Summary

Description

LOM (US$000s)

LOM (US$/t-Mineralized Material)

Surface

25,813

21.18

Underground Mining*

57,272

46.98

Process

25,407

20.84

Environmental

5,128

5.77

G&A

30,479

25.00

Total Operating

$144,099

$119.77

*A portion of the mine development has been capitalized

The Revenue Silver Mine has attractive project economics on both a Pre Tax and After Tax basis. After Tax economics reflect a total tax burden of 40.88% of the taxable income and includes Federal Income Tax at 34%, State Tax at 4.63%, and Colorado State Tax at 2.25%, collectively impacting 12.42% of the project's income. Indicative Economic Results for the Project on both a Pre Tax and After Tax basis are shown in the table below:

Project Indicative Economic Results (Dry Basis)

Description

Value

Units

Market Prices




Gold

1,350

US$/oz  


Silver

22.00

US$/oz  


Lead

1.00

US$/lb  


Zinc

1.00

US$/lb  

Estimate of Cash Flow (all values in US$000s)




Concentrate Net Return


US$/oz-Ag


Gold Sales

24,250

2.02


Silver Sales

257,000

21.37


Lead Sales

31,729

2.64


Zinc Sales

3,324

0.28


Total Revenue

$316,304

$26.30


Treatment Charges

(12,287)

(1.02)


Smelting & Refining Charges

(23,007)

(1.91)


Freight, Impurities & Third Parties

(8,665)

(0.72)


Gross Revenue

$272,346

$22.64


Royalties

(5,447)

(0.45)


Concurrent Reclamation

(5,128)

(0.43)


Net Revenue

$261,771

$21.76


Operating Costs




Surface Costs

(25,813)

(2.15)


Underground Mining

(57,272)

(4.76)


Process

(25,407)

(2.11)


G&A

(30,479)

(2.53)


Total Operating

($138,971)

($11.55)


Operating Margin (EBITDA)

$122,800



LOM Sustaining Capital

(26,144)



Income Tax

(15,246)



Pre Tax Free Cash Flow

$96,656



Pre Tax NPV @: 6%

$69,632



Pre Tax IRR

76.4%



After Tax Free Cash Flow

$81,410



After Tax NPV @: 6%

$58,848



After Tax IRR

73.2%


 

The economics for the Revenue Silver Mine were also assessed on a cash cost basis using a number of metrics, including cash cost per ton and cash cost per unit of metal produced for both the mine prior to treatment and refining charges and after and are presented in the Projected Cash Costs table below:

Project Cash Costs

Cash Costs

US$000's

Direct Cash Cost



Surface Costs

25,813


Underground Mining Cost

57,272


Process Cost

25,407


Site G&A Cost

30,479


By-Product Credits

(59,304)


Cash Costs Before Freight and TC-RC

79,668


$/ t-ROM

65.35


$/Ag-oz

6.62


Treatment Charges

12,287


Smelting & Refining Charges

23,007


Freight

8,665


C1 Direct Cash Costs

123,626


$/ t-ROM

101.41


$/Ag-oz

10.28

Indirect Cash Cost



Royalties

5,447


Concurrent Reclamation

5,128


Indirect Cash Costs

10,574


US$/t-ROM

8.67


US$/Ag-oz

0.88


Total Cash Costs

$134,201


US$/t-ROM

$110.09


US$/Ag-oz

$11.16

Run of Mine ("ROM")

Sensitivity analysis was also prepared for the Revenue Silver Mine project for percentage changes in recovery, capital, and operating costs and are presented in the NPV Sensitivity table below:

Project NPV Sensitivity (US$ Millions)

NPV @ 6%

-25%

-20%

-15%

-10%

-5%

Base

5%

10%

15%

20%

25%

Recovery

8

20

32

41

50

59

67

75

83

92

100

Capital Costs

63

62

61

60

60

59

58

57

56

56

55

Operating Costs

79

75

71

67

63

59

54

50

45

40

35

Previous Work:

The Revenue Silver Mine operated in the late 1800's and early 1900's before the mill burned in 1912 and the mine closed. The previous workings from this mining activity are known and there is production figures available for the latter part of the mine life. Ranchers Exploration and Development Corp. ("Ranchers"), Camp Bird Mine (Federal Resources) and Sunshine Mining also conducted significant exploration and mine rehabilitation work on the property during the 1960's, 1980's and 1990's. Ranchers also conducted test mining to verify grades and mining conditions and carried out metallurgical testwork based on the contiguous Camp Bird Mine flowsheet that has similar mineralization. The Vendors acquired the property in 2011 and conducted additional exploration and development work to validate the deposit and rehabilitate the mine for production. This allowed for the compilation of significant sample data to prepare a geological and resource block model in Vulcan software. A summary of this sampling work that was carried out on the Virginius and Yellow Rose Veins as well as surface stockpiles between 1966 and 2013 is presented in the table below:  

Exploration Work Virginius and Yellow Rose Veins 1966 - 2013

Sampling Work 1966 to 2013

# of Completed Work

Surface Exploration Samples

9

Surface Samples of Dumps and Tailings

818

Underground Channel Samples

1611

Surface and Underground Core Holes

399

 

Geology:

The Revenue Silver Mine is a typical epithermal system hosted in andesitic volcanic caldera features. Mineralization consists of narrow, high-grade quartz-carbonate veins containing freibergite and tetrahedrite (silver), native gold, galena (lead), sphalerite (zinc), chalcopyrite (copper) and pyrite. Historical mining, plus extensive drilling and channel sampling has confirmed continuity of mineralization in the Virginius and Yellow Rose Veins and the known resources are contained in these veins. They dip steeply and can be traced for up to 4.8 km along strike, more than 900 metres at depth, and range in width between 0.15 and 2.74 metres. There is also good potential to identify additional resources along the projection of strike and dip from the known resources and in six additional mineralized vein systems are intersected by the Revenue Tunnel. These, together with the mineral potential of being within a larger prolific historical silver mining district, indicate that there is good potential to expand the resource.

Mineral Resource Estimates:

A number of historical resource estimates were prepared for the Revenue Silver Mine by companies that previously conducted exploration of the mine. The Vendors also commissioned several resource estimates, which were prepared by SRK, including the Mineral Resource Estimate contained in the SRK Technical Report. Dorinda Bair, B.S. (Geology), CPG, is the Qualified Person responsible for the SRK resource estimates. The Mineral Resources for the Revenue Silver Mine are all contained in the Virginius and Yellow Rose Veins and have been classified as Measured, Indicated and Inferred based on standards as defined by the "CIM Definition Standards - For Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves", prepared by the CIM Standing Committee on Reserve Definitions and adopted by CIM Council on December 17, 2010.

The raw assay data for all metals, consists of several thousand samples from drillhole intercepts and channel samples across the vein and were compiled to prepare computer geological and block models in Vulcan software. The sample data was also assessed by sample type for the presence of high-grade outlier values that could impact grade estimation. Capping was reviewed for both the Virginius and Yellow Rose Veins based on log probability plots, which resulted in caps being assigned for all metals as presented in the Assay Capping by Deposit table below:

Assay Capping by Deposit

Metal

Yellow Rose

Virginius

Au (oz/t)

0.300

0.445

Ag (oz/t)

109

318

Cu (%)

NA*

3.75

Pb (%)

12.6

37

Zn (%)

10

10

*Cu was not estimated for Yellow Rose.

Source: SRK Consulting, 2014

The capped assay data was then composited to the minimum mining width of 3 feet and grade interpolation applied using inverse distance squared to determine resource blocks. The classification of the resources reflect the relative confidence of the grade estimates defined by the search radiuses determined for each classification and the number of composites and drill holes and/or channel samples required for each classification by vein. The classification criteria are intended to encompass zones of reasonably continuous mineralization.

Virginius Mineral Resource Estimate
The Virginius Main and Footwall Veins were extensively sampled in workings and in stope development by Ranchers and Sunshine Mining but due to limited historic Quality Assurance / Quality Control measures being applied during this period, the classification of resources was limited by SRK to "Indicated". The Indicated Mineral Resources for the Virginius Main and Footwall Veins are those blocks having a minimum of three samples within an anisotropic search of 100 ft x 100 ft x 50 ft. Inferred Mineral Resources are those blocks having a minimum three samples within an anisotropic search of 200 ft x 200 ft x 50 ft. All results from channel samples and drilling at the project that are within the wireframes were used in the Mineral Resource Estimate. Note that tons are short imperial tons.

Mineral Resource at the Virginius at a Cut-off of US$150/t* as at April 18, 2014

Area

Category

Tons

Ag (opt)

Au (opt)

Pb

(%)

Cu

(%)

Zn

(%)

Contained Metal

Ag

(M oz)

Au

(oz)

Pb

(M lb)

Cu

(M lb)

Zn

(M lb)

Virginius

Indicated

485,600

26.95

0.044

4.30

0.25

1.37

13.1

21,000

41.80

2.4

13.3

Virginius

Inferred

646,100

14.93

0.038

3.04

0.13

0.99

9.65

24,500

39.25

1.6

12.8

 

  • Mineral Resources are not Mineral Reserves and do not have demonstrated economic viability. There is no certainty that all or any part of the Mineral Resources estimated will be converted into Mineral Reserves.
  • The Mineral Resource estimates include Inferred Mineral Resources that are normally considered too speculative geologically to have economic considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as Mineral Reserves. There is also no certainty that Inferred Mineral Resources will be converted to Measured and Indicated categories through further drilling, or into Mineral Reserves, once economic considerations are applied. Mineral resource tonnage and contained metal have been rounded to reflect the accuracy of the estimate, and numbers may not add due to rounding.
  • *Cut-off is based on a minimum total recovered metal based on a mining and milling cost provided by Silver Star Resources LLC of $150/t and diluted to a minimum mining width of 3 feet.
  • Recovered block model metal value = (Ag oz/t  • Ag recovery  • US$/oz Ag) + (Au oz/t  • Au recovery  • US$/oz Au) + (2000 • Pb % / 100  • Pb recovery  • US$/lb Pb) + (2000  • Zn % / 100  • Zn recovery  • US$/lb Zn).
  • The metal price and recovery assumptions include a silver ("Ag") price of US$20/oz and recovery of 95%; gold ("Au") price of US$1250/oz and recovery of 90%; a copper ("Cu") price of US$3.15/lb and recovery of 80%; a lead ("Pb") price of US$1/lb and recovery of 90%; and a zinc ("Zn") price of US$1/lb and recovery of 85%.

Yellow Rose Mineral Resource Estimate
The Mineral Resources for the Yellow Rose Vein are classified as Measured Mineral Resources for those blocks having a minimum of three samples and three drillholes or channels which are within an anisotropic search of 125 ft x 125 ft x 50 ft within the vein. This classification takes into consideration that there has been sampling in workings around the Yellow Rose Main vein in addition to drilling. Indicated Mineral Resources are those blocks having a minimum of three samples and three drillholes or channels which are within an anisotropic search of 250 ft x 250 ft x 50 ft within the vein. Inferred Mineral Resources are those blocks having a minimum of three samples and three drillholes which are a maximum block-composite separation distance within an anisotropic search of 375 ft x 375 ft x 50 ft within the vein and related splays. All results from channel samples and drilling at the Project that are within the wireframes have been used in the Mineral Resource Estimate. Copper was not estimated at Yellow Rose due to validation concerns for the copper database. This data was hand entered from historical assay certificates and there were too many data entry errors for inclusion at this time. With additional, data review and data entry corrections, there is potential to add this data to the Mineral Resource Estimate. Note that tons are short imperial tons.

Mineral Resource at the Yellow Rose at a Cut-off of US$150/t* as at April 18, 2014

Area

Category

Tons

Ag

(opt)

Au

(opt)

Pb

(%)

Zn

(%)

Contained Metal

Ag

(M oz )

Au

(oz)

Pb

(M lb)

Zn

(M lb)

Yellow Rose

Measured

215,300

10.08

0.034

1.71

1.69

2.17

6,400

7.37

7.28

Yellow Rose

Indicated

100,700

10.92

0.036

1.96

1.74

1.10

4,000

3,95

3.5

Yellow Rose

Measured & Indicated

316,100

10.35

0.035

1.79

1.71

3.27

10,490

11.31

10.78

Yellow Rose

Inferred

38,100

11.01

0.025

1.69

0.92

0.49

700

1.28

0.701

 

  • Mineral Resources are not Mineral Reserves and do not have demonstrated economic viability. There is no certainty that all or any part of the Mineral Resources estimated will be converted into Mineral Reserves.
  • The Mineral Resource estimates include Inferred Mineral Resources that are normally considered too speculative geologically to have economic considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as Mineral Reserves. There is also no certainty that Inferred Mineral Resources will be converted to Measured and Indicated categories through further drilling, or into Mineral Reserves, once economic considerations are applied. Mineral resource tonnage and contained metal have been rounded to reflect the accuracy of the estimate, and numbers may not add due to rounding.
  • *Cut-off is based on a minimum total recovered metal based on a mining and milling cost provided by Silver Star Resources LLC of $150/t and diluted to a minimum mining width of 3 feet.
  • Recovered block model metal value = (Ag oz/t  • Ag recovery  • US$/oz Ag) + (Au oz/t  • Au recovery  • US$/oz Au) + (2000 • Pb % / 100  • Pb recovery  • US$/lb Pb) + (2000  • Zn % / 100  • Zn recovery  • US$/lb Zn).
  • The metal price and recovery assumptions include a silver ("Ag") price of US$20/oz and recovery of 95%; gold ("Au") price of US$1250/oz and recovery of 90%; a lead ("Pb") price of US$1/lb and recovery of 90%; and a zinc ("Zn") price of US$1/lb and recovery of 85%.

Mine Plan Resource:

Mine Plan Resources are a smaller subset of the larger SRK Mineral Resource Estimates and were determined by applying mining and economic constraints to the Mineral Resource Estimates. The Mine Plan Resources are based on a NSR cut-off grade of US$ 130 per ton for design purposes and applying a marginal cut-off grade of US$ 50 per ton for reporting based on the design. These numbers include a 90% mining recovery to the designed stope wireframes in addition to 15% unplanned waste dilution within stopes. Additional development of 5% to 10% was applied based on development type to account for detail currently not in the design. Zero grade was used for the waste dilution. The underground mine design process results in a Mine Plan Resource of 888,283 tons (diluted) with an average grade of 14.6 ounces of silver per ton, 0.02 ounces of gold per ton, 2.26 percent lead, and 0.90 percent zinc. A summary of the Mine Plan Resource is presented in the table below:

Mine Plan Resource Classification *


Description

Tons (kt)

Ag (oz/t)

Au (oz/t)

Pb (%)

Zn (%)

Virginius

Measured






Indicated

369.8

19.68

0.03

2.91

0.83

Measured + Indicated

369.8

19.68

0.03

2.91

0.83

Inferred

310.9

12.43

0.02

1.98

0.69

Yellow Rose

Measured

141.6

8.38

0.02

1.28

1.31

Indicated

45.2

11.29

0.01

2.21

1.63

Measured + Indicated

186.86

9.08

0.02

1.51

1.39

Inferred

20.7

5.19

0.01

1.05

0.73

*Includes Measured, Indicated, and Inferred reported using a marginal cut-off grade of US$50/t.

The PEA is preliminary in nature and is based on a resource model that contains Measured, Indicated and Inferred Mineral Resources. Inferred Mineral Resources are considered too speculative geologically to have the economic considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as Mineral Reserves and there is no certainty that the PEA will be realized.   

Mining:

The Revenue Silver Mine is accessed from the Revenue Tunnel, a 7,400 foot (2.26 km) long tracked adit that intersects the various vein systems identified in the mine and terminates at the Virginius Vein. There has also been 5,600 feet (1,707 km) of horizontal drifting on the Virginius and Yellow Rose Veins from the historical mining activity and development work. These workings have been in large part rehabilitated, and serviced with track, water supply, compressed air, ventilation and electricity to support mining activities. Track mounted electric locomotives are used to convey personnel and supplies to the working areas and to tram ore and waste rock to the mill and surface, respectively. An approximately 710 foot (216 metre) deep internal winze (shaft) was also sunk to access four additional lower levels of the Virginius Vein and would require rehabilitation for use.

The Revenue Silver Mine veins are narrow and contain high grades that are mined using narrow vein mining methods common to the area with a focus on minimizing dilution and maintaining grade control. The PEA uses shrinkage methods using a minimum mining width of 3 feet. Design criteria for the stopes include: a maximum stope length of 125 feet, 6 foot Rib pillars, 7.5 foot Crown pillars at the surface, and 12.5 foot Sill pillars between levels. Additional external dilution is estimated to range between 10% and 20% (about 4 to 10 inches) during shrinkage stoping. New footwall access drives are set-back from vein by four times mined vein thickness. Underground Mining Costs for the Revenue Mine are presented in the table below:

Revenue Mine Underground Mining Cost Summary

Type

LOM Cost (US$000s)

US$/t-ROM

US$/t oz-Ag

Development with Rail

1,665

1.37

0.14

Development without Rail

10,058

8.25

0.84

Virginius Stoping

24,383

20.00

2.03

Virginius Incremental Truck Haul

1,118

0.92

0.09

Yellow Rose Stoping

7,767

6.37

0.65

Standard Roybal Raises

6,010

4.93

0.50

Reinforced Roybal Raises

59

0.05

0.00

Alimak Raises

552

0.45

0.05

Scram Drift

4,477

3.67

0.37

Rehabilitation

1,183

0.97

0.10

Total

$57,272

$46.98

$4.76

 

Milling and Processing

The mill is situated in an underground excavation to minimize the surface mine footprint. The crushing and grinding plant and flotation circuits were designed by CH2M Hill and built with primarily new equipment. The plant was designed initially for a rate of 300 tons per day, but was built with oversized key components and will be expanded to 400 tons per day. Three concentrates will be produced, a gravity gold concentrate, a lead-silver flotation concentrate and a zinc-silver flotation concentrate. The lead and zinc flotation concentrates will be filtered and bagged prior to shipment to Teck Resources Limited for processing at their smelter in Trail, B.C. The gravity concentrate will be sold to Johnson Matthey and other refineries,

Preliminary metal recoveries from flotation were estimated from previous metallurgical test work that was done for Sunshine Mining and Ranchers and recent test work performed on grab samples performed by Resource Development Inc. for Star. Test work for the recovery of gravity gold was performed on grab samples by FL Smidth Knelson for Star.  The recoveries used for the study are shown in the NSR Calculation Inputs table shown below:

NSR Calculation Inputs

Lead Con

Met Recovery

Zinc Con

Met Recovery

Gravity

Met Recovery

Total

Recovery

Zinc

54%

Zinc

31%

Zinc

0%

Zinc

85%

Lead

85%

Lead

0%

Lead

5%

Lead

90%

Silver

92%

Silver

1%

Silver

2%

Silver

95%

Gold

87%

Gold

1%

Gold

2%

Gold

90%

 

The flotation concentrates will be purchased under an off take agreement with Teck Resources and processed at the Trail Smelter in British Columbia.

All tailings will be filtered to allow for water recovery that will be recycled back to the mill. The filtered tailings will be dry stacked and placed in a permitted impoundment facility which will eliminate the need for a tailings pond.

Environment and Community:

The site is fully permitted for production. The Company's due-diligence has revealed no historic concerns or issues with the mine site and operations. The required closure bond is in place with state authorities. The mine is situated in a historic mining district and has received strong community support. The majority of the workforce has been sourced from the local area and Fortune looks to continue to maximize the use of local resources.

The company is in the process of integrating the current management team with Fortune. Additional capital spending is planned to support mine development, ensuring the mill achieves concentrate grade targets, and realizes a number of opportunities to increase revenue.

Disclosure of Differences:

The PEA referred to herein and reflected in the SRK Technical Report is an updated economic analysis of the project based on the Mine Plan Resources and updated economic criteria. Variances between the information that was disclosed in the Company's news release, dated May 9, 2014 are based on the Company's internal models. The differences are shown in the table below:

Differences Between May 9, 2014 In-House and PEA Economic Analysis

Parameter

May 9, 2014 In-House

July 23, 2014 PEA

LOM Average Annual Silver Mine Production

1.78 million ounces

1.86 million ounces

Cash cost Silver Net of By Products prior to Freight and TC/RC

US$ 8.02/oz

US$ 6.62/oz

Breakeven Free Cash Flow Silver Price

US$ 12,42/oz

US$ 13.56/oz

Mine Life

13-Years

8-Years

 

Most of these variances between the SRK PEA and the in-house estimates disclosed in the May 9, 2014 news release reflect small changes based on updated information. The only significant change relates to the estimate for the mine life, which dropped from 13 to 8 years. This reflects the fact that the previous Company estimates were based on the total Mineral Resource Estimate that were factored to include mining criteria such as pillars and external dilution. The 8-year mine life reflected in the SRK PEA conversely, is based on the Mine Plan which applies additional mining and economic constraints to the resource. Additional definition drilling is required to support continuity of resource blocks where current widespread drilling indicates there should be continuity of the resource.

Conclusions:

  • The Revenue Silver Mine continues the commissioning process having shipped its first concentrate and is targeting a 400 tons per day production rate.
  • The high silver grades and by-product credits for gold, lead, zinc and copper support a low C1 cost of US$ 10.28 per ounce of silver inclusive of freight and smelter treatment and refining charges.
  • The average annual ROM silver mine is expected to be 1.86 million ounces before recovery, plus by-product credits.
  • There is potential to increase the estimated 8-year mine life; by extending the Mine Plan Resource into areas where there are Mineral Resources identified but insufficient drill hole date to define mining stopes; by extending the two main veins systems beyond the current Mineral Resource Estimate; by identifying resources in 6 other mineralized veins intersected by the main access tunnel; and expanding production to other mines in an historic silver mining district.

About Fortune Minerals:

Fortune is a diversified North American mining and development company. Fortune operates the Revenue Silver Mine in Colorado and is developing the vertically integrated NICO gold-cobalt-bismuth-copper project that is comprised of a proposed mine and mill in the Northwest Territories ("NT") that will produce a bulk concentrate for shipment to a refinery in Saskatchewan for processing to high value metal and chemical products. Fortune is also developing the Arctos anthracite metallurgical coal project in British Columbia and owns the Sue-Dianne copper-silver-gold deposit and other exploration projects in the NT. Fortune is focused on outstanding performance and growth of shareholder value through assembly and development of high quality mineral resource projects.

This press release contains "forward-looking information" and "forward looking statements" within the meaning of applicable Canadian and United States legislation, respectively (collectively, "forward looking information". This forward-looking information includes statements with respect to, among other things, the anticipated completion of the acquisition of 100% of the Revenue Silver Mine ("RSM"); the anticipated IRR, NPV, cash costs and mine life for the RSM; the planned ramp-up of the mill at the RSM to process an anticipated 400 tons per day; and the potential to increase the resources at and mine life of the RSM . Forward-looking information is based on the opinions and estimates of management as well as certain assumptions at the date the information is given (including, in respect of the forward-looking information contained in this press release, assumptions regarding: the Company's ability to fund the next staged payment for the RSM acquisition from external sources and additional staged payments from the mine's cash flow and/or external sources; production and costs of the RSM being in line with estimates; the mill having the ability to process at a rate of 400 tons per day; the ability of the Company to expand production in the future; the ability of the Company to obtain the necessary funds to undertake required capital investments in the RSM; and other assumptions set out elsewhere in this press release. However, such forward-looking information is subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking information. These factors include the inherent risks involved in the exploration and development of mineral properties, the risk that the Company may not be able to arrange the necessary financing to complete the acquisition of 100% of the RSM in accordance with its contractual obligations; the risk that the Company may not be able to increase production at the RSM mill to 400 tons per day; unexpected technical delays and associated timing delays in the ramp-up of the mine and associated production of silver; the risk that operating and/or capital  costs may be materially higher than anticipated; the risk of substantial decrease in the price of silver or other precious metals; potential loss of key personnel; potential discrepancies between actual and estimated production; potential discrepancies between actual and estimated mineral resources or between actual and estimated metallurgical recoveries; potential  labour shortages; the risk of mining accidents; the risk of changes in applicable laws or regulations; and other factors. In addition, the risk factors described or referred to in Fortune's Annual Information Form for the year ended December 31, 2013, which is available on the SEDAR website, should be reviewed in conjunction with the information contained in this news release. Readers are cautioned to not place undue reliance on forward-looking information because it is possible that predictions, forecasts, projections and other forms of forward-looking information will not be achieved by the Company. The forward-looking information contained herein is made as of the date hereof and the Company assumes no responsibility to update or revise it to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required by law.

SOURCE Fortune Minerals Limited

For further information: Fortune Minerals Limited, Robin Goad, President, or Troy Nazarewicz, Investor Relations Manager, info@fortuneminerals.com, Tel.: (519) 858-8188, www.fortuneminerals.com; Renmark Financial Communications, Barbara Komorowski: bkomorowski@renmarkfinancial.com, or Farialle Pacha: fpacha@renmarkfinancial.com, Montreal Tel: (514) 939-3989, Toronto Tel. (416) 644-2020, www.renmarkfinancial.com